Foreign Literature

Contact Donovan Rees or Joanna Skeels

This department specialises in rare and important works of French, German, Italian, Russian, Spanish and South American literature from the eighteenth to the twentieth centuries.

Here you can find first editions and signed or presentation copies of authors as diverse as Akhmatova, Balzac, Borges, Camus, Chekhov, Dostoevsky, Goethe, Goldoni, Hugo, Kafka, Leopardi, Lorca, Manzoni, Pirandello, Pushkin, Schiller, Tolstoy, Zola, and many others. Among the important works which have passed through our hands are the original working manuscript of Turgenev's Fathers and Sons, now in the Pushkin House in St Petersburg, the only known copy of the first edition of Brecht's first play, Baal (1920) with his working notes, and an extraordinary collection of Pushkin first editions.
  1. TOLSTOY, Lev Nikolaevich.

    Posmertnyia khudozhestvennyia proizvedeniia… Pod redaktsiei V. Chertkova. Tom I [-III] [Posthumous...

    Moscow, A. L. Tolstoy, 1911-12.

    First edition of Tolstoy’s posthumous works, including the first appearance of many important pieces: ‘Hadji Murad, as well as The Memoirs of a Madman and The Devil, was published only in 1911, in the collected edition of Tolstoy’s posthumous works. This collection also includes several plays and...

    £2500

  2. TOLSTOY, Lev Nikolaevich.

    Posmertnyia zapiski startsa Fedora Kuz’micha umershago 20-go ianvaria 1864 goda v Sibiri, bliz goroda...

    St Petersburg, V. Vrublevskii, 1912.

    First edition, very rare, of an unfinished story, begun in 1905, exploring the popular legend that Tsar Alexander I had staged his own death in 1825 and had gone into hiding as the hermit Fedor Kuz’mich. Kuz’mich, St Fedor of Tomsk in the Russian Church, was sent to Siberia as a vagrant, where he...

    £1750

  3. TOLSTOY, Lev Nikolaevich.

    Posmertnyia khudozhestvennyia proizvedeniia… pod redaktsii V Chertkova. Tom I [-III] [Posthumous artistic...

    [Moscow], A. L. Tolstoy, [1912].

    A reprint, in slightly smaller format than the first edition of 1911, of Tolstoy’s posthumous works, which included the first appearance of many important pieces: ‘Hadji Murad, as well as The Memoirs of a Madman and The Devil, was published only in 1911, in the collected edition of Tolstoy’s posthumous...

    £800

  4. [TORGA, Miguel, pseud.] ROCHA, Adolpho Correia da.

    Abismo. Poemas.

    [Coimbra, “Atlantida”, 1932.]

    First (and only) edition of one of the very rare early collections of poetry of Miguel Torga, published under his own name while he was still a medical student in Coimbra.

    £3500

  5. TORRE, Guillermo de.

    Literaturas Europeas de Vanguardia.

    Madrid, Rafael Caro Raggio, [1925].

    First edition: Guillermo de Torre’s famous defence of the avant-garde movement, which contains a detailed account of the origins and development of surrealism.

    £300

  6. [TOULOUSE-LAUTREC, Henri de, illustrator]. MARSOLLEAU, Louis, and Arthur BYL.

    Hors les lois. Comédie en un acte, en vers …

    Paris, P.-V. Stock (formerly Tresse & Stock), 1898.

    First (and only) edition. Toulouse-Lautrec was commissioned by André Antoine to create a design for the play’s premiere on 5 November 1897 at the Théâtre Antoine. It represents actors, in full period costume, mingling with theatre-goers during the interval.

    £750

  7. [TRENTO, Giulio].

    Gli spiriti. Paragoni poetici. Dialogo d’un giovine, ed un cinico dell’andare alla Guerra. Diario mensuale...

    Treviso, G. Trento, [1788].

    Only edition, mentioned only in one or two pieces of local antiquarian history but not recorded in any of the usual library catalogues. An ephemeral publication containing a short story, a literary divertissement linking passages from Parini’s Mattino with an unidentified poem on gambling and an ode...

    £300

  8. TRET’IAKOV, Sergei Mikhailovich.

    Zheleznaia pauza [Iron Pause].

    Vladivostok, [I. Korst], 1919.

    First edition, rare: Tretyakov’s first collection of poetry. The constructivist playwright, writer and special correspondent for Pravda, Sergei Tretyakov (1892-1939), began publishing in 1913. Soon after the publication of Zheleznaia pauza he became heavily involved in the Siberian futurist movement...

    £800

  9. TRET’IAKOV, Sergei Mikhailovich.

    Rychi, Kitai! Stikhi [Roar, China! Poems].

    Moscow, “Ogonek”, 1926.

    First edition, very rare. Tretyakov wrote these lyrics during an extended visit to China in 1924, during which he collected material for his subsequent work on contemporary China. The name of the title poem (Rychi, Kitai!) was used again for Tretyakov’s famous avant-garde play of the same name, published...

    £350

  10. TRISSINO, Giangiorgio.

    La Poetica.

    [Vicenza, Tolomeo Ianicolo, 1529 (colophon)].

    First edition, the corrected issue, of Trissino’s milestone essay on language, aesthetic and poetry. The first issue bears the erroneous date of 1549.

    £2200

  11. TURGENEV, Ivan Sergeevich.

    Sochineniia… (1844-1874.) Izdanie brat’ev Salaevykh. Chast’ pervaia [-vos’maia] [Works… (1844-1874)....

    Moscow, Grachev, 1874

    A handsome set of this rare lifetime edition of Turgenev’s works, the fourth to be published by the Moscow booksellers Ivan and Fyodor Salaev. This edition includes for the first time two of Turgenev’s later prose works, Spring Torrents (1873) and the autobiographical story Punin and Baburin (1874).

    £2750

  12. TURGENEV, Ivan Sergeevich.

    Nov’. Roman [Virgin Soil. A Novel].

    Moscow, 1878.

    First edition printed in Russia of Turgenev’s novel about the Populists of the 1870s. It was first published in the journal Vestnik Evropy in 1877, followed shortly afterwards by an edition published in Leipzig.

    £1500

  13. TURGENEV, Ivan Sergeevich.

    Polnoe sobranie sochinenii … Posmertnoe izdanie [The Complete collected works … Posthumous edition].

    St Petersburg, Glazunov, 1883.

    First complete collected edition of Turgenev, the author’s last literary undertaking.

    £4500

  14. TURGENEV, Ivan Sergeevich.

    Stikhotvoreniia [Poems].

    St Petersburg, [V Tipografii Glazunova], 1885.

    First edition: a collected volume of Turgenev’s poems omitted from the Complete collected works of 1883 (see previous item).

    £1200

  15. TYRTAEUS and CALLINUS.

    Les chants...traduits en vers par Firmin Didot.

    Paris, Firmin Didot, pere et fils, 1827.

    One of only 100 copies - all hors de commerce - of this deluxe folio Didot edition of some of the oldest martial elegy verses of the Western tradition: the surviving works of the Spartan poet Tyrtaeus and the Ephesian poet Callinus (7th-6th century BC). The text is preceded by an engraved Lettre to Firmin...

    £6000

  16. TZARA Tristan.

    Entre-temps.

    Paris, Le Calligraphe, 1946.

    First edition of this collection of surrealist verses, the fourth volume in the Le Calligraphe collection. Number 150 of 344 numbered copies on vélin du marais.

    £350

  17. UNAMUNO, Miguel de.

    Teresa. Rimas de un poeta desconocido.

    Madrid, Renacimiento, [1924].

    First edition: a collection of love poems, with a prologue by Rubén Darío.

    £400

  18. VERGA, Giovanni.

    Cavalleria Rusticana. Scene popolari. [Con disegni di Edoardo Calandra].

    Turin, F. Casanova, 1884.

    First edition. This is the source for Pietro Mascagni’s opera of the same name.

    £1500

  19. VILLEHARDOUIN, Geoffroy de (Charles du Fresne DU CANGE, editor).

    Histoire de l’empire de Constantinople sous les empereurs françois,...

    Paris, Imprimerie Royale, 1657.

    First collected edition, comprising the third edition of Villehardouin’s chronicle, edited and translated by Du Cange, and the first edition of Du Cange’s history of the Latin empire in the Levant. The original and modern French versions of Villehardouin’s chronicle are printed on opposite pages....

    £1400

  20. VOLOSHIN, Maksimilian Aleksandrovich.

    O Repine [On Repin] …

    Moscow, “Ole-Lukoie”, 1913.

    First edition thus: three pieces written earlier in the year and published in journals on the work of Ilya Repin (1844–1930), often regarded as Russia’s national artist. At the end is an extract from a lecture (1885) by Landtsert on the painting ‘Ivan the Terrible and his Son’. Voloshin (1877–1932)...

    £450